The purchasing power of concentrated European buyers is high. Supplier power for niche products and premium produce suppliers may be somewhat higher and is expected to increase in the future in line with growing demand for tropical, exotic and off-season fruit and vegetables. The threat from substitutes for fresh fruit and vegetables is low; however, there is an emerging threat from new entrants in developing markets as well as in the EU market. Taking all this into account, the degree of competition will increase further in the mid and long term.
The EU market for sweet potato is small but growing considerably. The import and consumption are rapidly expanding, increasing by 100% over the last five years. European supermarkets are catering to a growing demand of exotic and ethnic food. Important destinations in Europe are the UK and the Netherlands; the latter being the main hub for the rest of Europe. The USA withhold a 70% market share in the supply of sweet potatoes. Opportunities are there for suppliers from developing countries with differentiated or competitive products.
What requirements should spices or herbs comply with to be allowed on the European market?
The EU market has strict requirements on food safety and quality. In addition, non-legal requirements related to sustainability are becoming more important for suppliers in developing countries.